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Ophthalmology, Health care sciences and services
Purpose: There is no plan for a national child eye care programme or existing human resource infrastructure to address the immediate challenge of child eye health in Mozambique.This study aims to design, implement and evaluate a school based pediatric vision screening service, to identify those in need of eye care services, among Mozambique’s 11,561,000 children.
Methods: Primary School Screening took place in three schools in Nampula, Mozambique in September 2010 and March 2011. The children’s vision was screened by an optometry student, optometrist or teacher with Log MAR ETDRS letters at 4 Meters. Ophthalmoscopy was performed on all children by qualified optometrists. Children requiring refraction were refracted on site, those needing ophthalmological assessment were referred to the ophthalmologist in Nampula Central Hospital.
Results: 770 children were screened in total. The ocular abnormality detection rate was 10.65%, and included 7.40% of children requiring spectacle provision, and the remaining 3.25% requiring referral to the Ophthalmology Unit. The distribution of myopia, hyperopia and astigmatism among children provided spectacles was 28.57%, 12.5% and 58.93% respectively, and overall prevalence in the study sample was 2.21%, 0.91% and 4.29% respectively. Referrals for ocular health abnormalities included, cataract (26.92%), ptosis (23.08%), glaucoma (15.38%). All teachers interviewed are eager to participate in a vision screening programme. Two Primary School Teachers were trained in vision screening. Teachers scored 100% case detection agreement with optometrists and student optometrists, with no noted false positive or false negative referrals. Conclusions: Teachers appear to have an adequate level of education and interest to undertake vision screening in children. This study will inform a regional pilot teacher screening project for Nampula, which will include the addition of “Vision Screening” to teacher training modules at Universidade Pedagogica, Nampula, as part of a plan to develop a national child eye care programme for Mozambique.
Phelan, A., O'Donoghue, L, Saunders, K., Thompson, S., Ocampo, V., Naidoo, K., Loughman, J.:Primary School Vision Screening Involving Teachers in Nampula, Mozambique. American Academy of Optometry Annual Conference,2011, Boston, USA.